The Mousehole Cat, Antonia Barber


5/52, 10th Apr 2014, Week 15 (about 10 books behind)

First a decision: to include children’s fiction in my total number. I’m reading to Cub and they are gorgeous books, some of which I love. Despite them being much shorter this is not a cop out: I do feel we should be discussing them with as much of a standard as you would in anything else.
If you don’t want to read them – why would your child?

This book was a favourite as a child and reading to my 2 month old was just as magical. Whilst her eyes fixed on the gorgeous illustrations by Nicola Bayley (which I would happily put on my wall), I read the beautiful language aloud calming her ready for her nap. This is not a book that belittles or patronises; instead, it introduces children to new language that they might not find in books that often, if anything they learn a huge number of fish breeds.

This poetic story tells of Old Tom and Mowzer braving the paws of the Great Storm Cat and singing to him, calming the storm and rescuing a starving coastal village. The intelligence and care within the story is lovely and will bring a lump to your throat as the villagers come to light the way home. Visiting Mousehole on Christmas Eve Eve has become one thing I must do before I die!

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